Lazy computing, no preparation

I recently attended a workshop on error correction, to refresh what I knew about it. No problems there. In the middle of the presentation the presenter had to show a short movie on error correction. Trying out multiple media players but to no avail, he stood there floundering. These computers that the university ‘maintained’ had failed the acid test. The person who’d set up the computer(s) had installed a programme that rolled back any changes that was made to the computer the time was it on. In doing so any viruses or malware that was installed would be deleted. So, everytime the computer is booted, the operating system starts with no issues. All okay except that if not kept up to date the computer itself becomes hopelessly and frustratingly non-usable. It’s just an example of a very, very lazy way of computing. Set up a computer with this programme and forget it.

Knowing what was coming, I stuck up my hand and asked him if he needed my USB key. I had programmes that could be run straight from the USB key, avoiding the problem of lazy IT staff. I was not impressed. At the state of the computers or that the presenter had not checked that his movie would be able to be played.

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Nightmare child of a cellphone and a PDA; big, bright and handsome

Samsung Note 2.jpg

I remember when I had a Nokia 3210. It was a GSM phone, and a simple design to boot. Aside from being able to programme your own ringtones, it was a no frills device, and it fit comfortably into the front or back pocket of my Levi’s jeans. About a week ago my wife bought online the Samsung Galaxy note 2. Even with the progress of time and technology, this phone was a step up with what either of us had, an Apple iphone 3GS, and a Samsung sliding phone. The term ‘phablet’ does come to mind as it presents a big, colourful screen, wide and handsome to behold. Going to the other end of the spectrum, my  old Dell Axim X5 (now serving out it’s retirement in my old computer bag) a bonifide PDA, served admirably as an e-reader, movie player, primitive games console and even little black book.

The Note 2 is a combination of all of these, and more. As equally the key selling point is the screen , so does the operating system have a lot to do with usability. Equipped with Samsungs touch wiz, some people hate it, as for me, it’s okay so far. It allows me to surf the Internet while watching a pint sized version of a movie. Overall, I think it’s a good device with no caveats so far.